MANILA (UPDATED) - President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday released government's list of politicians with alleged links to illegal drugs ahead of the May midterm polls.
In a speech in Davao City, Duterte read some of the names on the narco-list and said the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has filed administrative cases against the local officials before the Office of the Ombudsman.
The list included officials holding positions from vice mayor and higher.
"Yung iba 'wag na muna kasi hindi 'ko sigurado. 'Yung nai-file na, medyo validated na, we can say we have gathered enough proof," he said.
(Let's not name the others because I'm not sure. Those who are facing cases are somewhat validated, we can say we have gathered enough proof.)
In a statement, DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said 46 officials are facing administrative charges of grave misconduct, conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service, conduct unbecoming of a public officer, and gross neglect of duty.
Ten local officials from Calabarzon, Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) were included in the list.
Meanwhile, five are from Western Visayas, four in Northern Mindanao, three each from Central Luzon and Soccsksargen, two each from Central Visayas and Zamboanga Peninsula, and one each from Ilocos, Cagayan Valley, MIMAROPA, and CARAGA.
Año said the list was provided by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and validated by the Interagency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD), which consists of PDEA, police, military, and National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) among others.
Duterte had earlier tagged other politicians and even police officers in the drug trade as part of his anti-drug campaign. Last year, mayors sought a dialogue with Duterte for fear of their lives following the slay of several local officials, including those linked to illegal drugs.
The ICAD then verified the President's list and investigated those who were initially excluded, the DILG said.
ABS-CBN News is not releasing the names pending independent verification.
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